Horace A. Davis assisted in rescuing Huetter Alvis from beneath masonry pipes in a well, Chalkville, Alabama, April 19, 1961. In the wells which was 60 feet deep and contained 15 sections of stacked masonry pipe, each three feet in diameter and weighing 600 pounds, Alvis, 24, well digger, was digging sandy soil from beneath the bottom pipe. The stack dropped, pinning his hand beneath the bottom section as the lower 10 sections broke in various degrees but balanced precariously atop each other. Police and firemen were summoned, and later Davis, 33, crane operator, volunteered to enter the well. He was secured in a rope sling and lowered 30 feet inside the sections. A broken piece of pipe which blocked his way was removed from the well by another rope. Davis reached Alvis after making his way through a 20-inch opening and thence through the lower eight pipes, which had been jarred out of line. A chain attached to a wrecker was lowered, and Davis fitted its hook under the piece of pipe which held the hand of Alvis. The hook slipped from the pipe, and Davis then was removed from the well. Later Roy Lee Williams volunteered to enter the well. He was lowered to the 20-inch opening in the rope sling. Williams, with difficulty worked his way through the opening and thence downward through the askew pipes, being careful not to dislodge any of the pieces. Davis again was lowered 30 feet, from where he relayed instructions from Williams. A bucket containing small digging tools was lowered. Williams aided Alvis as best he could in the limited space but had to rest frequently. One piece of the bottom pipe was carefully lifted from the well, and another piece of the bottom pipe was loosened. Oxygen was supplied to the two men when they became short of breath. When the wrecker was started briefly, the pipe sections vibrated and sand fell from the sides of the well. After two and a half hours of digging, the trapped hand of Alvis was free of sand below it. Alvis then forced his hand loose from the pipe. Williams tied another rope around Alvis and to his own rope sling. He then wrapped his legs around Alvis. The men removed Davis and at once began to raise Williams, with Alvis suspended under him. Slowly and with difficulty Williams and Alvis were drawn through the askew pipe sections to the top of the well. Alvis recovered although his hand was badly crippled.
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